The City of Victoria is looking to finalize plans to implement Sunday parking fees for on-street parking later this month. (File photo)

Victoria gears up to axe free parking on Sundays

Council vote puts Sunday parking fees towards bus passes for youth

A Victoria council decision supports eliminating free Sunday parking to help pay for youth bus passes.

The vote, made at a special committee of the whole meeting on Feb. 11, came following a motion by Mayor Lisa Helps to charge regular rates for Sunday parking starting May 1, and dedicate the revenue to youth transit.

“It would be great to give all of our residents free transit, but we need to start somewhere,” said Helps during the meeting. “Just like recycling education started with kids in school so kids would go home and tell their parents not to throw out pop cans, so [is] true with transit.”

Speaking with Black Press Media, Helps said the initiative is also about tackling poverty.

“This puts that money – up to $545 a year based on BC transit youth rates – back into parents’ pockets,” she said. “And down the road, back into youths’ pockets.”

Currently, the city generates approximately $7 million annually from nearly 2,000 on-street parking spots that charge for use Monday to Saturday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Victoria is still investigating the total revenue that could be generated from Sunday parking but staff used pro-rated Saturday statistics and past survey results to determine that Sunday parking could bring in up to $600,000 a year.

RELATED: CRD endorses Climate Emergency Declaration

RELATED: Victoria youth skip school for climate strike

Helps said she will be asking the transit commission to provide free transit for youth in the region and discussed collaborating with BC Transit and the local school district on the project.

“This motion doesn’t take care of everything but it certainly says that should transit fail us, we’ll have close to $600,000 a year towards youth transit passes,” said Helps, adding Sunday parking revenue estimates could be conservative.

Helps proposed a pilot project start this fall, but Coun. Ben Isitt said the project should move faster and be fully implemented by September.

“I hope our council will take the position that we fund it this year and put our money where our mouth is in terms of being in a climate emergency,” Isitt said. “I think we have to demand results if we are going to put out these funds and not just hold out on a promise to young people that they will have access to transit, I know it’s a priority to them.”

In estimates, staff assumed parkade parking would remain free on Sundays and noted that the Yates Street parkade – which frequently reaches capacity on Sundays – will likely become even busier.

Sunday parking fees and revenue are expected to be finalized in the city’s budget presentation on Feb. 28.

RELATED: Victoria considers instating Sunday parking fees to subsidize youth transit passes



nina.grossman@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Victoria Police host Faith-Based Safety Forum in light of recent religious attacks

More than 35 faith-based leaders voice concerns, air questions

Still barriers to abortion access on Vancouver Island

Experts say transportation, support, doctors can be barriers to accessing abortion

Oak Bay dog walk benefits guide dogs

Two more walks set for Sunday in Victoria and Colwood

Kelowna toddler suffers cracked skull after fall from balcony

Neighbour who found the two-year-old boy said he has a bump the size of a golf ball on his head

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of May 21

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

POLL: Were you satisfied with the Game of Thrones series finale?

Millions gathered in front of their televisions Sunday night to watch the… Continue reading

Support growing for orphaned Okanagan child after father dies in highway crash

Family thanks emergency crews for assistance in traumatic incident

RCMP probe if teen was intentionally hit with ski pole by mystery skier on B.C. mountain

The incident happened on March 20 on Grouse Mountain. Police are urging witnesses to come forward

Pipeline protester chimes in on Justin Trudeau’s B.C. fundraising speech

The government purchased the Trans Mountain pipeline and expansion project for $4.5 billion

Baby boom seniors putting pressure on B.C. long-term care: report

B.C. leads Canada in growth of dementia, dependence on care

UPDATED: B.C. man says he’ll take People’s Party lawsuit as far as he can

Federal judge shut down Satinder Dhillon’s ‘nonsensical’ motion to bar use of PPC name in byelection

Canada stripping citizenship from Chinese man over alleged marriage fraud

The move comes amid severely strained relations between Ottawa and Beijing

Most Read